London house prices are now growing more slowly than almost everywhere else in the UK

You’ll need a pot of gold to buy these.
You’ll need a pot of gold to buy these.
Image: Reuters/Dylan Martinez
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At last! There is a respite from the days of runaway property prices in London. For years, the British capital recorded double-digit annual growth in house prices, detached from the trend in the rest of the UK (and reality, first-time buyers mutter).

This year, and for the first time since the financial crisis, growth in London house prices has been slower than the national average.

In February, the average UK house price rose 5.8% versus the year before, to £217,502 ($270,900), according to the latest data from the Office for National Statistics. Meanwhile, in London, property prices rose an annual 3.7% in the month, one of the slowest rates recorded in any region.

Still, buying a home in London remains an achingly expensive endeavor—the average price in February was £474,704, or around 12 times the annual earnings of residents. By comparison, in the UK’s second-most expensive region—the South East, most of which is within commuting distance of London—the average property price was £311,539.

In the least-expensive region, the North East, the average home is worth £123,749. So, for the price of one pokey flat in London, you could buy three homes in Newcastle and still have money left over.